curse word


: a profane or obscene oath or word : curse, swear word
Eisenhower could swear as eloquently as most sergeants, but he went easy on the curse words in mixed company.Stephen E. Ambrose

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web In the final instance, the frustration crescendoed with a scream — and four-letter curse word — that echoed around the intimate setting at Goodyear Ballpark, reverberating from the mound to the stands to the press box loud and clear. Jack Harris, Los Angeles Times, 13 Mar. 2023 But what is Alabama’s favorite curse word? Tandra Smith |, al, 5 Nov. 2022 The youngster famously said her first curse word the night Donald Trump won the 2016 U.S. presidential election — and the second occasion was just as memorable. Emma Kershaw, Peoplemag, 16 Mar. 2023 Gaga, who has flowing blonde hair, presents herself rather regally, while Warren, who has short black hair, loves few things more than a good curse word. Scott Feinberg, The Hollywood Reporter, 11 Mar. 2023 Munger, who has been a significant critic of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, continued his attack on digital assets Wednesday, continuously referring to crypto as a four-letter curse word used to describe excrement. Paul R. La Monica, CNN, 15 Feb. 2023 One of the gunmen pointed his weapon at Kerr and told him not to get out of the car, punctuating his command with a curse word. Rafael Olmeda, Sun Sentinel, 7 Feb. 2023 Just one offensive or curse word can lead to a parental advisory label, so what’s defined as explicit can be subjective. Gary Gerard Hamilton, Anchorage Daily News, 3 Feb. 2023 Like Guirgis did for his father, Junior brings a dog into the household to keep him company; Walter calls the dog by a choice curse word instead of his name, but the emotional attachment is apparent underneath the derision. Julia Jacobs, New York Times, 10 Jan. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'curse word.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1870, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of curse word was in 1870

Dictionary Entries Near curse word

Cite this Entry

“Curse word.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Jun. 2023.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!